Saturday 10th & Sunday 11th August 1985, Northampton
European Championship & Inter-Nations Cup

Mick Bonner took his first win in the European Championship during the Northampton Speedweekend, having been chased most of the way by Alf Boarer. But this time Bonner made no mistake and came through for a fine win. It was a great pity to see Dutchman Henk Hanssen pushed of the track before the off, the '85 World Champion finding his brakes locking on. After two warm up laps Alan Coltman took the lead from the novice grade, his time at the front being short-lived as Dermott McGivern came charging through with Ray Coulson in tow. The race had progressed little further when Brian Forrest stopped very suddenly on a fence post, Brian requiring hospital treatment for a badly cut foot complete with cracked bone. The race continued around Forrest's rescue operation, McGivern still leading with Tony Brewer now up to second from Alan Riley, Mick Eason and Boarer. McGivern was ahead) lapping back markers as Boarer and Bonner carved their way through. dicing for fourth place. Basil Craske, complete with misfiring engine, got into bother with Dutchman Jan Schraets and Dave Wesbroom (who retired), Craske rejoining down the field, as Bonner eventually slipped by Boarer. With 14 laps done. Bonner was on McGivern''s tail, delaying little further before taking up the running with Boarer hot-foot behind him. Then German George Gimbel lost a rear wheel spinning right in front of the leaders and into the fence.

It was all looking vaguely reminiscent of last year's World Final as Bonner circulated ahead of Boarer, whilst others including Ray Perry and Malcolm Goodman fell by the wayside. As the race drew to a close Boarer was running out of time and ideas, the leading duo half a lap clear of Riley and McGivern and as the laps ran out, Bonner came home for a fine win Boarer, Riley, McGivern, Brewer, Harry Lowe - making his comeback for the first time in three years - Paul Sinclair, Craske, Nigel Brake, Dave Scott and Klaus Kilianski from Germany.

The first of two races on Saturday evening saw Goodman propel his heavily steaming car to a worthy victory, the former National Champion taking the win with his new engine ahead of Craske, Bonner, Hanssen, Schraets and Boarer.

Bonner's luck ran out for the next race just after the start, a collision seeing the champ with his wheel hanging off. McGivern again shot into the distance from Lowe and Riley, but quietly and quickly Schraets was pushing through, the Dutchman eventually demoting Craske for the lead, which he held to the line. Craske was second from Riley, Boarer, McGivern, Hanssen and Lowe.

The open wheelers had one heat before Sunday's main race for the Inter-Nations Cup. Craske was soon through to a first, a position he stayed in until the end, second place going to Coltman from Riley, Boarer, Schraets, Perry, Bonner and Hanssen.

The Inter-Nations Cup was a fairly hectic 25 lapper, Lowe making a demon start as the green flag dropped and shooting straight into the lead. Perry was also looking good in third behind McGivern, but nobody could with the flying star men headed by Craske and Bonner, both settling in behind Riley. Poor Lowe held on for as long as he could, but eventually the hard-charging quintet consisting of Riley, Craske, Bonner, Boarer and Hanssen went hurtling by leaving Lowe for dead. The lead battle was was really getting exciting now, with any one of the five ready to take over, Craske being the first to try his luck on outside. Basil made it, Riley getting dropped another two places as Bonner and Hanssen went by. Just as it looked as though the race was between those these two, Hanssen took them both by surprise, charging round the outside to take over at the front, and that was how it stayed, Hanssen taking a superb victory from Craske, Bonner, Boarer, Riley, McGivern, Lowe and Sinclair.

The grand final on Sunday again saw McGivern streak off as Paul Rogers ground to a halt in the fence with broken suspension. Although Rogers did try to rejoin the race, he quickly realised how unwise this was as the car crabbed across the track. McGivern tried to fend off Craske for as long as possible but sure enough, Basil and his new engine were on song now and there was no holding back. Hanssen moved up to second by the end as Craske took the flag, the rest of the placings going to McGivern, Bonner, Boarer, Lowe, Riley, Scott and Geoff Nixon.